Wow, what a night. Still riding that weird high that only a 19-inning walk off win on a Monday night can give you. Baseball Girl and others have done an admirable job recapping the game action, so I'm not going to dwell on it. Just wanted to share some personal notes and photos.
The game started off with the irony of ironies. My friend and I were waiting impatiently for my sister to get to the game, we missed Pujols' first inning homer, and wondering why she was late. As fate would have it, because she was late and had to drop her friend off, she drove instead of taking BART (unlike us who BARTed in from SF). Little did we know how important this would be.
As we were getting off BART, a young girl said it was a "perfect night for a ballgame, not too hot, not too cold." A prescient statement.
Small crowd, of course, but bigger than the Monday night crowds of years past; good A's team, good weather, the Angels, probably all helped. Our seats are by the visitors' bullpen so lots of Angels fans were around. Most of them are cool. I'm hoping to preserve my voice after the beating it took the night before at the Warriors game.
The game went on like many others. The A's were down, Straily was weak, but as a crowd there was a hopefulness in the air even when we were down. It's only the 5th inning, right? Still got 5 frames to get those runs back.
The Angels start getting their bullpen up. My plan to preserve my voice is lost, as usual. We have seats by the visitors' pen for the sole reason of heckling the opposing pitchers. Some typical taunts to Roth...but generally I don't talk shit when we're down by a zillion runs.
However, De La Rosa heard it...Pulling out every juvenile insult I could muster, rained on him relentlessly. "You're gonna blow the game, De-La-La-La-Loser!" My sister says: "You gotta get that last one in" as he's getting ready to run to the mound. I send him off appropriately.
The crowd is getting into it now. One Angels fan was getting testy with all the heckling of Hamilton, starts yelling at us, tells us we're not real fans because we only support the team at the end of the season. My sister "At least we had an end of the season that mattered." She then said "Talk to me after 15 games" (WTF?) Hilarious giant Mexican dude behind me: "OK lady, what are we gonna talk about?" Too bad he had to leave for BART, that guy was crackin' jokes all night.
At some point they asked us to choose the song we want to hear:
- Hit Me With Your Best Shot
- Rock You Like a Hurricane
- We Got The Beat
Solid selections, all three. I went with #1 but the crowd overwhelmingly chooses Rock You Like a Hurricane.
We of course got the Animal House clip http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7vtWB4owdE
The A's fans are having fun, staying loose, the atmosphere is changing, we're all getting loud, slapping the empty chairs for added noise, losing that voice I wanted to keep, and the comeback is ON!
I didn't say much to Scott Downs because I was trying to just cheer on the A's...but in "getting that last one in" I told him "Scott Downs! Yes! You're my favorite pitcher!" When I saw Downs, I knew we had a chance.
In the 9th, a fan to Frieri: "How do you pronounce your name?" My response: "I think it's pronounced BLOWN SAVE." We all knew Cespedes would at least tie it...and delirium when he came through. MASS EXODUS #1 - Angels fans leave in droves. Except that loudmouth lady and a guy whose jersey name says "Angry" and won't stop waving around his rally monkey.
In the 10th, the HR-that-wasn't really did not look like a home run to me. However, all of us firmly believed that if CY kept running at full speed, he would have had an inside-the-park HR. I couldn't believe he slowed down. If only he hit it inside the "O" a fan would have won $10,000. You had a chance to be epic CY! Still, can't hate on him as he came through earlier with the pinch hit.
From then on we're all standing as its way more comfortable than sitting in those plastic chairs. Fans without jackets huddle behind the Angels' bullpen to get some warmth from the bullpen heaters.
I start running up and down the stairs and around the concourses between innings to keep my blood flowing.
As time goes on, we keep saying one more inning, one more inning...but BART is going to close and last train to SF is 12:23. My sis says she's gonna stay no matter what, and I said, "we'll keep you company if you'll drive us back to the City (she lives in Oakland)." Really this was a selfish deal because I did not want to leave.
Also, I am thinking, I have to give credit to my wife. Anyone who encourages their husband to go to a Warriors playoff game, A's game on back-to-back days, and stay for the long extra innings, when she has to work a 12 hour shift...believe me I do not take that for granted!
As the innings drone on...they are playing videos from the late '80's early '90's A's. I can't focus enough to watch them. We got bonus dot racing for a second time. I picked white but then I didn't even pay attention to how it finished.
We are all cheering really really loud on every at bat, hoping someone can break it open.
Freakin' 14th inning stretch. Dick Callahan uses up his last bit of energy with an enthusiastic announcement of this "time-honored baseball tradition!"
My friend brought some wheat thins that are getting mauled at this point.
That freaking walk by Anderson on Shuck...ugh. We all were worried that we could lose on a bases-loaded walk. But we were still congratulating Anderson on a fantastic outing. I said, alright A's, just win or lose it here, don't tie it up.
They play the Animal House clip again. The fans get into it...again http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=q7vtWB4owdE
Once again the Bringer of Rain got on in the unlikeliest way (Kendrick and Pujols dropping the ball?)...
Tied up, I started laughing uncontrollably for a full minute. Here we go again!
At some point they announced it was the longest game in Coliseum history. We take photos to commemorate the occasion:
That one dude behind me (on the main photo at the top) stayed back after his large group of friends all left. Only the troopers...and Angry rally monkey and Ms. Loudmouth still hanging on. I estimate 1,000 people.
Anderson out, Jerry in. "JERRY JERRY JERRY JERRY" and "JER-RY BLEV-INS CLAP, CLAP, CLAPCLAPCLAP" resonates when he comes to the plate later on. Fantastic, everyone there knew EXACTLY what was up. We were loud. Pissing off Ms. Slegna Loudmouth to no end. As Hamilton's epic failures mount, I can see her blood pressure rising.
When Kohn is pitching I run to the area right behind home plate, I've never sat there, but obviously it's open seating at that point. However rather than sit I just keep doing jumping jacks behind home plate to try to distract him. Come on Donaldson! Norris?
It doesn't work. Oh well, worth a shot. A man with a baby swaddled up is still holding steady out there. And another guy says he is coming back tomorrow (!)
We realize we're missing whole at bats as our attention is fading.
We start heckling Enright. I'm saying "End Right," my sister saying "NOW!"
"End Right NOW!"
"End Right NOW!"
We pick up the cheer again in the 19th...
2 people from SF stayed with no ride, no BART. Luckily they overheard us and we offered them a ride back to SF. They just couldn't bring themselves to leave.
My friend, who is a school psychologist in the south bay, and thus has to get up hella early and deal with some intense situations, says she has to go back no matter what after the bottom of the 19th.
I should mention at this point that it's her first A's game. Sometimes you can't make this stuff up.
I say, "we can't say we were at the longest game in A's History [which they announced at that point, not just at the Coliseum] and say we left early." We are at a stalemate. The A's have to solve this problem for us. Moss steps up to the plate, announcing "Here I am."
ROCK YOU LIKE A HURRICANE